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I've been running a small beef jerky subscription company for the past two years. For the most part, I've used it as a marketing sandbox to play with unique growth tactics.
A few weeks back I decided to attempt an experiment to see if I could manufacture virality.
While it's still underway, I thought it would be helpful to share my steps and success thus far in case it's helpful for others:
I'm calling this experiment "vegan therapy". It's sorta a reverse marketing campaign.
The idea was to promote the company to the wrong audience, which in my case that's vegans. The premise being that, "It's ok to cheat with meat", somehow suggesting that there is this legion of vegans that secretly want to eat meat, but don't want to be caught doing so.
For the record, I do understand that it's an absurd notion.
I've been using the tagline, "Ashley Madison for Vegans" and built the creative for the ad around their "iconic" image. Replacing the shushing finger with a beef stick.
Obviously I really didn't think that I'd be able to "convert" vegans into meat eaters, but that wasn't the intention of the campaign. It was to ignite a flame within a passionate community and allow the debate to catch the attention of my true customer.
I would have continued, but Reddit cut me off and would no longer allow me to target the r/vegan subreddit.
After spending $158 in total:
263 clicks, 0 PR, 2 Conversions
518 clicks, 1 article, 4 Conversions
Out of the 15 journalists, one has converted into an article thus far. https://www.foodbeast.com/news/beef-jerky-ashley-madison/
From an ROI perspective based on LTV I'm ahead, but my goal isn't for a few sales here and there, it's to manufacture nationwide buzz.
I'm not sure if it will work or not, but it sure has some people fired up:https://twitter.com/LuxAlptraum/status/846029216546263040